A stabbing attack at an Ismaili Muslim center in Lisbon, Portugal has left two people dead. The suspected attacker was shot at the scene, arrested, and transferred to a local hospital for treatment. Photo by Antonio Cotrim/EPA-EFE
March 28 (UPI) -- A stabbing attack at a cultural center used by Ismaili Muslims in Lisbon, Portugal, has left two women dead. The attacker was shot at the scene, arrested, and taken to a local hospital for treatment.
The victims were both Portuguese citizens, and the attacker is believed to be Afghan.
Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa called speculation on a motive "premature."
"Everything points to this being an isolated act," Costa told reporters.
Home Affairs Minister Jose Luis Carneiro said the suspect's wife had died in a Greek refugee camp and that he currently has three children.
Careiro said the suspect had been studying Portuguese at the center.
Local media reported that one of the victims was the suspect's language tutor.
The Ismaili sect is the second-largest sect of Shia Islam, after the Twelver sect that is dominant in Iran.
In majority-Sunni Pakistan, the Ismaili sect comprises most of the Shia minority, and have faced suicide attacks from Sunni extremists who consider the sect heretical.
Ismaili community leader Narzim Ahmad told local media that the victims were staff members at the center.
According Omed Taeri, the head of the Afghan community Association, the suspect had arrived in Portugal a year prior.